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  • One day at a time...

  • Copyright 2012 Firstpost

    Table of contents

    Just the Tests remain...

    From ODIs, a god named Sachin Tendulkar, retires 04

    Sachin Tendulkar and the polarised world 06

    The Sachin Tendulkar moments that got us hooked. 08

    Sachin Tendulkar: The Milestone Man 11

    Sorry Sachin haters, but this time its personal 16

    The 2015 World Cup and the message Tendulkars sending 18

    Arise Sachin Tendulkar. The cricketer and the man 21

    The retirement debate

    Lets hope Sachin wins our hearts again 24

    Sachin Tendulkar and the big question 26

    Go, Sachin, go? But what did we do to deserve a Sachin? 28

    Dons black and white farewell. How will Sachin walk away? 30

    Sachin magic and then some...

    Sachins 100 was a nudge, not a blow 33

    Bharat Ratna for Sachin? Greatness needs no sarkari certificate 35

    At Eden, Sachin Tendulkar abandoned his pride 37

    If Sachin Tendulkar batted like Virender Sehwag. 39

    Cricket isnt a religion, Sachinism is 41

    Everything you wanted to ask Tendulkar but could not 43

  • Copyright 2012 Firstpost

    Just the Tests remain...

  • Copyright 2012 Firstpost

    From ODIs, a god named Sachin Tendulkar, retires

    Tendulkar is the highest run-getter and most-capped in this format of the game.

    Tariq Engineer, Dec 23, 2012

    S achin Tendulkar, arguably the best one-day batsman ever, has retired from 50-over cricket. Tendulkar played in 463 ODIs, during the course of which he scored 18,426 runs with 49 centuries and 96 half-centuries, all of them world records. He aver-aged 44.83 in the format and had a strike-rate of 86.23. He was also the first male cricketer to make one-day double-hundred.

    In a statement given to BCCI President, N Srinivasan, Tendulkar said: I have decided to retire from the One Day format of the game. I

    feel blessed to have fulfilled the dream of being part of a World Cup wining Indian team. The preparatory process to defend the World Cup in 2015 should begin early and in right earnest. I would like to wish the team all the very best for the future.

    I am eternally grateful to all my well wishers for their unconditional support and love over the years.

    His retirement is not entirely a surprise given that he has often opted out of playing one-day

  • Copyright 2012 Firstpost

    series over the last few years. His last one-day innings was a half-century against arch-rivals Pakistan during the Asia Cup earlier this year. It was during the same tournament that he made his hundredth international hundred.

    Tendulkars blossoming as an ODI batsman was all the more remarkable given that he took 79 matches to make his first ODI hundred. It was his promotion to opener that changed the tra-jectory of his one-day career. Over 344 matches opening the batting, he scored 15,310 runs at an average of 48.29, with 45 of his 49 hundreds. His ability to take on and dominate the oppo-sitions opening bowlers often gave India the psychological advantage even before the first ball was bowled.

    He saved his best for the big occasions, averag-ing a staggering 56.95 with six hundreds from 45 matches across six World Cups and was the tournaments leading scorer in 2003. Indias

    victory in the 2011 World Cup filled the one gap Tendulkar felt he had in his CV. Emphasising his ability to perform when the pressure was highest, he also averaged 54.44 in tournament finals, with six hundreds from 39 games.

    Beyond the numbers, Tendulkar also left his fans with many indelible memories, from hit-ting a pumped up Shoaib Akhtar for six in Centurion in the 2003 World Cup to crush Pa-kistans spirit to his 200 not out against South Africa in Gwalior in 2010 a few months shy of his 37th birthday.

    Tendulkars ODI career began and ended against Pakistan. He made his debut against them in 1989 in Gujranwala, where he made a duck. He was adequate in the middle order but switched to opening the batting in 1994 and made an instant impact with 82 in 49 balls against New Zealand.

  • Copyright 2012 Firstpost

    Sachin Tendulkar and the polarised world

    Perhaps, he might want to avoid doing both. Perhaps, he might just want to play the game and play his

    shots. Perhaps, hed just want to break the self-imposed chains.

    Ashish Magotra, Dec 25, 2012

    S ourav Ganguly, Sunil Gavaskar, Greg Chappell, Dennis Lillee, Martin Crowe, Kapil Dev, Steve Waugh, Nasser Hussain, Vinod Kambli, Harbhajan Singh, Ian Botham, Imran Khan there are some people who live life on the edge. You are never quite sure which way they will fall or how to categorize them but for some reason you talk about them. They po-larise opinion. They give rise to debate. You can either love them or hate them but doing both is not possible.

    But Tendulkar never quite fit that category. He was untouchable in that sense. He was uni-versally loved. However, now, that seems to be changing. His retirement wasnt greeted by sorrow instead, the world no, only India, seemed strangely glad. It might be his bad run of form but even then it seems rather harsh.

    The sight of Tendulkar batting in the middle brought a nation together and almost everyone

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    realised how great a privilege it was. His man-nerisms have been etched into our mind so much that most us can at least try and mimic him. Even Rahul Dravid gives it a go at times.

    But now we choose to forget all of that. We choose to instead focus on his failings as a bats-man; on his retirement; on his selfishness; on his age; on his legacy; on his brand value. The cynics will tell you he plays for money for his sponsors.

    We wonder did he time in right? Why is he still hanging around? Hasnt he already run his race? Even his ODI retirement was greeted by: Oh! It means that he will continue to play Tests.

    Even during the match-fixing scandal not a fin-ger was raised in the direction Sachin. He was beyond that. He could not be turned by fame or fortune. He was crickets child wonder and the sport meant more to him than anything else. But now his wisdom, his desire and his motives are questioned rather unabashedly.

    And that must hurt. Its surprising how in the space of a year, Tendulkar has gone from much-loved legend to a player who is being looked down on by India at large. Surely, that could not have sat well with a player who almost subcon-sciously sought out the right way to do things. He avoided controversy, focussed on the game and the game alone.

    When he first started playing ODIs as the Indian Express pointed out the ODI record holders of that era were Alan Border (Most matches: 192), Vivian Richards (Most runs: 6,442), Desmond Haynes (Most hundreds: 16). Between 1989 to 2012, the record books saw 192 grow to 463, 6,442 to 18,426 and 16 to 49.

    Tendulkars impact is undeniable. Ganguly, in a column, said that even 70 per cent of Sachins ability will be hard to find. So is the criticism directed towards the master batsman a result of

    a people thinking that they know better?

    India just hasnt become a social media hub. Its become a socially critical hub. We criticise because we can and sometimes, only because everyone else is doing it as well. In our hearts, we still love Tendulkar but perhaps all the criti-cism gets to us just as it gets to him.

    Tendulkar is one of crickets immortals but surely some part of him will be wondering at what cost? Has the India that we once knew changed? Has the India that Tendulkar once knew changed?

    We liked Tendulkar because somehow despite his greatness, he seemed normal. For just a mo-ment, imagine being in his shoes imagine hav-ing the world at your feet; imagine being rich and powerful; imagine having people hang on to your every word; imagine the cheers as you walk into the ground. Imagine all of that and multi-ply it because for Tendulkar, it was all around 10 times more than any normal cricketer. And through all of this, he remained sane and we loved him for that.

    He will still be around for Test matches and according to sources; he will make himself available for the Test series against Australia before announcing his retirement from Tests. But before he goes, there is one final battle for the publics affection that he will want to win again.

    And perhaps the only way to do that is to find his old self again. Break the chains, play the shots and go out in a blaze of glory. For Sachin, nothing else will do. For the critics, too, nothing else will do.

    But should he play for them or for himself? Or should he just play the game as he wants to? Either which way, when it comes to Tendulkar, we are never satisfied.

  • Copyright 2012 Firstpost

    The Sachin Tendulkar moments that got us hooked

    As good as Tendulkar is as a Test batsman, his place in ODI history is even more special.

    Ashish Magotra, Dec 23, 2012

    W e all have our favourite Sachin Ten-dulkar moments; moments that make it seem like we are having a private conversation with him; moments that stand out as landmarks. How many times in conversation with your friends has someone mentioned Desert Storm or the World Cup or the 175 or the 200 or the last over or the superb arm and how many times have you felt a wave of nostalgia wash over you.

    As good as Tendulkar is as a Test batsman his place in ODI history is even more special. He changed the way people approach the game; he changed the way India and Indians approach

    the game and in the end, he changed himself for the game.

    We present a list of Tendulkar moments that left us wanting for more

    Playing Hero at the Hero Cup,